Release date: Feb. 10, 2004
Contact: Deb Hammacher, Associate Director, University Media Relations,
at 404-727-0644 or

Preston King to Give Emory/Morehouse Lectures

WHO: Preston King, political philosophy professor at Morehouse College and Emory University

WHAT: Global North-South Relations Lecture Series

WHEN: 4 p.m. Thursdays, Feb. 12 and 26, March 4 and 18

WHERE: 200 White Hall, 301 Dowman Dr., Emory.

COST: Free and open to the public. For information, call 404-727-8722. Parking is available in the Fishburne parking deck. A map is available online at

Emory University and Morehouse College will jointly host the four-part lecture series "Global North-South Relations," featuring Preston King, scholar-in-residence at both institutions. The lectures are "Patterns of Dominance in the Global System" on Feb. 12, "The Mythology of Free Trade in Global Markets" on Feb. 26, "Drugs: A Case for Global Decriminalization" on March 4, and "Terrorism: Weapons of the Weak?" on March 18. All lectures are at 4 p.m. in 200 White Hall, 301 Dowman Dr., Emory, and are free and open to the public. For more information, call 404-727-8722.

King is a respected scholar of political philosophy, but he is best know to most Americans for his conviction in 1961 and pardon in 2000 for evading the draft. King had registered for the draft as a student at Fisk University, and went on to study in Paris, Vienna and London. While a graduate student at the London School of Economics, he was informed by the draft board in his native Albany, Ga., that his student draft deferment request was denied. King took exception to the familiar tone of the draft board, who referred to him as "Preston" rather than "Mr. King," a common form of disrespect to African Americans in the segregated South at that time.

In an essay about his experience, King said, "I wrote back saying, 'Your form of address, "Dear Preston," is for intimates. I don't know you; you don't know me; this is official business and I would prefer you to address me in an official way. Change your form of address and I will obey the draft. If you don't change it, I will ignore it.'" Since the draft board did not comply, King refused to abide by the draft board's demands and was subsequently charged and convicted of evading the draft. He fled the country in 1961 for England rather than serve 18 months in prison, and remained in exile for nearly 40 years until granted an unconditional pardon by President Bill Clinton in 2000 so King could attend the funeral of his oldest brother.

During his time in England, King spent 15 years as a professor of political philosophy at Lancaster University. Since August 2002 he has been a scholar-in-residence and distinguished professor of political philosophy in the Leadership Center at Morehouse College and in Emory's Institute for Comparative and International Studies, alternating by semesters between the schools.

King is a political philosopher whose research interests include comparative politics and development politics. He has been educated all over the world, including at Fisk University in the United States, the London School of Economics and the Universities of Vienna, Strasbourg and Paris. King has taught around the world, including in Australia, Cameroon, Fiji, Ghana, Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda and New Zealand. He also is a widely published author, whose most recent books include: "Fear of Power: An Analysis of Anti-Statism in Three French Writers" (2003), "The Ideology of Order: A Comparative Analysis of Jean Bodin and Thomas Hobbes" (2000), "Thinking Past a Problem: Essays on the History of Ideas" (2000) and "Socialism and the Common Good" (1995).


Emory University is known for its demanding academics, outstanding undergraduate college of arts and sciences, highly ranked professional schools and state-of-the-art research facilities. For more than a decade Emory has been named one of the country's top 25 national universities by U.S. News & World Report. In addition to its nine schools, the university encompasses The Carter Center, Yerkes National Primate Research Center and Emory Healthcare, a comprehensive metropolitan health care system.


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